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  • Is sex necessary for a happy marriage?

    • As a marriage counselor, I see a lot of couples who come to me with sexual problems in their relationship. The stories that couples tell me about their sexual difficulties vary, but most of them go something like this: He wants more sex and she doesn’t. He says he needs sex to feel close and she doesn’t see why her snuggling, cuddling and stuff she does around the house doesn’t do it for him. She says she needs to feel close first to have sex and he doesn’t see why sex doesn’t help her to feel close.

      At the end of the day, she doesn’t see why sex is so important to him, anyway. There are so many other things they do together as a couple that makes their relationship great that sex shouldn’t be as much of a priority. But after a while, she begins to wonder if there’s something wrong with her for not wanting sex and he also begins to wonder if something’s wrong with him for wanting sex as much as he does. So the couple goes on like this, both wondering if something is wrong with them or the other one, and they grow more and more frustrated and distant. So it’s no wonder that many couples, and women especially, wonder if sex really is necessary for a happy marriage because it seems to just cause more problems. If he could just learn to do without, the problem would be solved. (You can read another great article with 6 tips for talking to your husband about sex.)

    • Sex is vitally important in marriage

      The only thing you uniquely share with your spouse that you don’t share with anyone else is sex. So sex is the only thing that sets you and your spouse apart from simply being roommates. It’s a vital part of marriage.

      Not only does sex set you and your spouse apart from simply being roommates, it also requires a deeper level of communication that you don’t normally do with just anyone. Sex requires you to talk to each other about intimate, emotional things. For example, to have a truly intimate experience with your spouse, you need to tell your spouse where you like to be touched, and make requests for certain things. This requires that you both feel a comfort level with each other that you’ve never felt with anyone else before. It requires you to both become very vulnerable by asking, receiving and giving sexually. And it requires you to reach a deeper level of trust that your spouse will respond to your requests without judgment.

    • Sex also creates passion and a unique connection

      To be able to talk to your spouse in this kind of vulnerable, intimate way creates a unique connection that you simply can’t have with anyone else without becoming sexual. This kind of intimate talk and physical touch creates passion in your relationship, too. It tells your spouse you think of him or her as more than just a friend. You think of your relationship as something deeper. This unique connection that lovers have creates vibrance, passion and romance between the two of you that you can’t create in any way other than sexually.

      When couples come to me for counseling about their sexual difficulties, they’re sometimes surprised that I don’t focus on technique or the number of times that they engage in sex in a week. Whether they have sex two times a week or 10 times a week is irrelevant. What’s more important is that sex becomes an intimate and connecting experience for both of them. If this isn’t happening, then the marriage isn’t really happy. So instead of couples arguing about sex and creating more distance, couples need to learn to really talk and communicate about sex. They also need to be open to hearing what their spouse wants, feels and needs. This is not only a recipe for great sex but a great marriage as well.

     

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  • The Ashenda Holiday

    Three days of women!  Ashenda is a holiday celebrating women here in Northern Ethiopia mostly in the Tigray region.  It corresponds to the end of a two week fasting period for Ethiopian Orthodox Christians commemorating the Virgin Mary, but the holiday has grown way beyond that now.  I’ve been hearing good and bad things about Ashenda since arriving in Ethiopia.  Most of my local friends think this holiday is the best thing to happen all year.  Some disagree and say that it objectifies women and encourages begging and is just another holiday in a region with too many holidays disrupting things.  Some of my Peace Corps friends told me to hide away in my house because the harassment will be too much as women bombard you  asking for mandatory “donations.”  Other Peace Corps Volunteers told me to embrace it, stockpile a bunch of small bills and enjoy it.  I chose the latter and had a great time over the past 3 days participating in Ashenda.

     

    Ashenda Day 1

    Prepare yourself for Ashenda!  I was told by everyone to get ready for the best (or worst) holiday celebrated here.  Depending on your perspective I guess.  As usual, I really had no idea what to expect.  I expected to spend money so I’d been saving my small bills for a week or two in anticipation.  I got ready to go into my office as usual on Thursday and went in to find most of my colleagues there.  A few hours into the day and all of a sudden the whole office just got up and declared that they were done working for the day since it was Ashenda.  We all walked to the older part of town where there was supposed to be some sort of celebration for the holiday.  Upon arrival to the market, which was transformed into a sort of amphitheater, I was greeted by a few of the local leaders of Abi Adi and told to sit in the “VIP Area” next to the stage.   There was a band playing Ethiopian music and a few different singers taking turns singing traditional Ashenda songs.

    The audience kept growing and growing until it seemed like the whole town was there watching the ceremony.  I had a great seat in the little VIP area so I was happy to stay as long as necessary to see what developed.  There were all sorts of interesting acts including dancers, skits, speeches, poems, and music.  Ethiopian TV was there to cover the event, for national news I think, although I haven’t seen the report on the news yet.  One of the producers told me to sit in the front and drink a glass of Mes (the local honey wine).  I said what the hell and did as told.  Maybe I’ll be on TV…

    The whole ceremony had a bit of a competitive theme.  It was Abi Adi versus Kola Tembien; think of it as town versus county.  Every time there was an Abi Adi act, there was a rebuttal from Kola Tembien.  I lost track of who was winning but enjoyed it all.  The most bizarre thing I saw was an act performed by an older woman.  She walked up to the stage and put her arm into her dress.  I had no idea what she was doing and then she started flapping her arm to make armpit fart noises.  She started simultaneously humming along to the beat set by the armpit farts to make a kind of one person rhythm section.  People were giggling, but I thought it was hilarious.  I’ve never seen anything like that here.  Apparently this is a type of “traditional music” from our region called hanbetit.  When I asked my friend about it later he told me that it is classical music comparable to that from a guitar or piano.  Now that’s a stretch for me.  Anyway the ceremony was great with lots of beautiful culture, dance, and music.

    Ashenda Day 2

    I prepared myself for the day by putting small bills in my easily accessible pockets and started wandering around town.  It took about 2 minutes for the first group of girls to spot me.  They rushed up to me and formed a circle around me.  One of them had a drum and they all clapped along to the beat while singing one of the traditional Ashenda songs.  I clapped along with them for a while and realized there was no way to get away from them.  They literally surround you!  I gave them some money, as is the custom, then they started singing their praises for me and let me move on, only to be faced by yet another group doing the same thing.

    The women and girls of Abi Adi form special groups to go solicit money from men around town.  They all get new outfits, headbands, hairstyles, and jewelry to “beautify” themselves.  They set out with a hand drum to collect some “donations.”  It’s pretty similar to trick or treating for Halloween in America.  Once they target you, there is really not much you can do to escape politely.  You must give them a donation.  If it’s enough, they’ll praise your name.  If it’s too little, they’ll make fun of you and call you cheap.  The amount you give depends on the size of the group, their age, and in my opinion, the quality of the performance.  Little girls get less than esteemed older women, of course.  The money used to be given to the Church but now most of the girls keep it for themselves, dividing the profits among the group.

    Along with the donations and singing, the local dance of Awers plays an important part in the Ashenda tradition.  Awers is a traditional dance that originated in Abi Adi and Tembien.  It involves a man and a woman.  The guy jumps around the girl and basically shows off while the girl responds to his lead and moves around him.  It’s a very stylized dance with a lot of variability, depending on the guy performing it, but there are certain moves and rhythms that everyone follows.  I’m getting better at it and learned a lot by watching so many different guys perform it over the last few days.

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  • 16 Most Beautiful Cities in Africa

    Considered the poorest continent on the planet, Africa is the home to 54 sovereign nations with some progressing nations who are quite wealthy like Nigeria, Morocco, Tunisia and South Africa. Nigeria in particular is an international oil industry player; is by far Africa’s biggest producer of oil with over 2.5 million barrels produced every day. Not only Africa’s largest oil producer, Nigeria is the fifth highest exporter of oil in the world and Africa’s largest economy. For the past decade Nigeria, Morocco, Equatorial Guinea and Angola has seen some admirable developments.

    Let’s see the some of the most beautiful cities in Africa. The Africa you don’t see on TV!

    Luanda, Angola

    Capital of Africa’s second largest oil producer, Luanda is home to the nation’s main seaport and administrative center. In the past decade, this city has achieved the most developments among any city in Africa. With the help of China International Trust and Investment Corporation (CITIC), Luanda is looking more like a western country

    Agadir, Morocco

    Capital of Agadir-Ida Ou Tanane province, Agadir is one of the major urban centres of Morocco. The city has been rebuilt after the 1960 earthquake. It is now Morocco’s largest seaside resort; attracting tourists from all over the world.

     

     

    read more : http://africanleadership.co.uk/blog/?p=10880

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  • Addis Ababa Street talent

    There have been performances in public places for gratuities in every major culture in the world, dating back to antiquity. For many musicians street performance was the most common means of employment before advent of recording and personal electronics. Some use the platform using their dance moves to generate money. Addis is no different, entertaining the crowd while using soccer balls, bicycles and bottles is used to entertain the crowd. People who enjoyed the show will contribute money for the entertainer and another person will pass the basket to collect money

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  • THE NUMBER OF TIMES YOU PEE INDICATES HOW HEALTHY YOU ARE

    According to Dr. Neil Grafstein, assistant professor of urology at the Mount Sinai`s Hospital NYC, your pee frequency can reveal a lot about your systematic health

    How often should one pee?

    Generally, there is no definite number of times for peeing. However, people usually urinate between six and eight times a day. Also, there are a number of factors which have an impact on urination frequency such as hydration and how you hydrate yourself.

    For example, people who drink more water, will normally pee more often. Also, those who consume alcohol, coffee and other foods and drinks which act like bladder irritants will pee more frequently.

    Can we pee too often?

    People who urinate 11 times a day, or more, after drinking two liters of fluid may possibly have a problem with pee frequency. Often, frequent peeing can occur as a result of overactive bladder which causes the urge to pee a lot. However, Dr. Grafstein says that we are able to train our bladder, but only if we don`t have incontinence problems.

    Other Urine related Facts

    • Holding the pee is not bad, unless it starts causing pain.
    • Regularly holding of your pee can lead to bladder infections
    • The normal color of the pee is see-through yellow.
    • Particular foods can change the color of your pee (blackberries can change it to pink).
    • Asparagus can cause your pee to be foul-smelling.
    • Pee is 95% water.
    • Sweet-smelling urine is a sign of diabetes
    • The average stream of pee is about seven seconds.
    • Your urine stream becomes weaker as you grow older.
    • You also pee more as you age.

    Avoid drinking fluids before going to bed to prevent sleep disruption from the urge to pee.

     

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